I’ve found some new ones. Old ones. Applying them differently, trying labels on for size.
Autistic. Does it fit? Does it feel odd? Do I feel better, worse, no different at all, wearing that label? I don’t know. I don’t know anything any more. I am overwhelmed, underwhelmed, worded out. I am the same, I am unchanged, the world is the same, but my place in it feels a little shaken.
Will you look at me differently? Or will you look at the label differently?
What does it mean to step towards a diagnosis after passing all my life for just a little awkward, socially clumsy, face challenged, all of these phrases that mean not quite up to scratch. And yet, and yet there are some things I do so very well. I can debug your computer program, spot the pattern in the data, see the connections all around us that seem to pass most people by.
(Why do people cut down trees and pave gardens and then wonder about bigger puddles?)
I have another place where I’m writing in more detail about me. Where I’m choosing different. Where I can stretch my understanding, explore my insides, without butting up against brand awareness or competitions or routines or memes or any of the things I have crammed into this place.
It’s cluttered this little blog. Like my life. My mind. My house. My browser. (I had nearly 50 tabs open. It has taken me an hour and a half to get it down to 20. If it takes that long to tidy up a browser, do you see why my house defeats me?)
What this means to me is that I can stop feeling that I have failed at being normal. I can recognise that I am not those things. That I do think sideways at some points. And do you know what? It might be different. But different isn’t wrong.
I’m not wrong. I’m not failed.
I am me. And now I can work out what that really means.